Experience the Difference: Bright Leaf Red Hots

Bright Leaf Red Hots are made locally by family-owned Carolina Packers Inc. in Johnston County, North Carolina, and are in their own food category. Red Hots are short, fat Bright Leaf Hot Dogs with a spicy kick—the perfect size for a biscuit or with your eggs in the morning.

bright leaf red hots north carolina

Our customers have been enjoying this Southern classic for more than 80 years in North Carolina. Whether they've been eaten cold right out of the bag or fried on a biscuit! Here are some actual customer reviews...

"These small links are great in the morning with some scrambled eggs & cheese!" 

"Bright Leaf Carolina Red Hots are bursting with all the savory flavors I remember as a kid! I simply pop mine in the air fryer, with some potato bread, mustard, and sometimes relish. Yum! I can’t get enough..!!"

"How to describe the Red Hots? So dang good! Marylander here but had some spells in my favorite state. (90’s—Raleigh, Cary, Angier and Morrisville). Never had them till now. My bad! Definitely will be a repeat customer."

"I grew up in Wilson, NC eating these red hots and hot dogs all my life but, when I moved further down south I found out they don't have Bright Leaf. They have some red hots here but, they don't come even close to Bright Leaf. These are some of the best hot dogs and red hots on the planet."


What are Bright Leaf Hot Red Hots made of?

@carolinapackersinc Replying to @rickyrangel461 Here's how Bright Leaf Hot Dogs and Red Hots are deliciously different 😋 #brightleafhotdogs #redhots #redhotdogs #hotdog #brightleaf #ncfood ♬ original sound - Carolina Packers Inc 🌭

Bright Leaf Red Hots are made with fresh, local pork and beef, crushed red pepper and a unique blend of herbs and spices. The links have 9 grams of protein and only 11 grams of fat, has been gluten-free since 1941, and contains milk.


Where can I buy Bright Leaf Red Hots?

Discover Bright Leaf Red Hots primarily in North Carolina supermarkets and grilling establishments, spanning from Hickory, North Carolina to the coast. Tap here to explore which stores and grills feature our products.


Where are Bright Leaf Red Hots in the grocery store?

Bright leaf red hots grocery store north carolina

If our Red Hots aren't displayed alongside other hot dogs and sausage on the wall or well, search the store's central bunkers. If you still cannot find us at a nearby grocery, fret not - we can always ship directly to your doorstep.


How do I pick the perfect Red Hots at the store?

To ensure the utmost freshness of Red Hots, look for them at the bottom of the bunker or the rear of the well. Crucial tip: always check the label's expiration date before making a purchase.


How do I cook Red Hots?

@carolinapackersinc The best way to start your day 🌞 #brightleaf #brightleafredhots #redhots #brightleafrecipes #nc #gottobenc #breakfast ♬ Good Day - Brett Eldredge
  • Pan (Stove Top) - Preheat the eye on your stove top to medium heat. Add a small amount of oil to the pan. Wing the Red Hots and place them in them in the pan. Cook for 4 - 6 minutes on one side and turnover for another 4 - 5 minutes (black charred line means it's done).
  • Charcoal Grill - Preheat the grill. Light the coals and let them burn until they are covered in white ash, which usually takes 20-30 minutes. Place the Red Hots on the grill grates. Grill the Red Hots for about 8-10 minutes, turning them occasionally to ensure even cooking. You'll know they're done when they're heated through and have nice grill marks.
  • Gas Grill - Preheat grill to 300 - 350°F. Place the Red Hots down on the grill grate and cook for about 5 - 6 minutes on one side. Then turn over and cook for about four to five minutes (black charred line means it's done).
  • Smoker - Preheat the smoker to 225-250°F. If using aluminum foil, tear off a piece large enough to wrap around the Red Hots. Place the links on the foil, and fold the edges of the foil up to create a shallow tray. This will help to catch any drippings and prevent the links from drying out.
    Place the Red Hots in the smoker and cook for 1-2 hours, or until they are heated through and have reached your desired level of doneness.
  • Airfryer - Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Wing the Red Hots. If you cut them, be sure to cut them lengthwise so they don't fall through the air fryer basket. Place the links in the air fryer basket. Cook the Red Hots for about 6 - 8 minutes, turning them halfway through to ensure even cooking. You'll know they're done when they're heated through and have a crispy exterior. 


How do I store Bright Leaf Red Hots, and how long do they last?

How to store bright leaf red hots north carolina

Bright Leaf Red Hots are made fresh and sitting in grocery stores within three days and only last 19 days. If you're going to eat them soon after purchasing them, just put them in the fridge. But if you're going to wait, open up the loose bag, take out the Red Hots you need, take the rest of the links, put them in a Ziploc bag, and put them in the freezer so they'll last longer.


Delicious Recipes:

Tap on the images below to get the full recipe and ingredients...

Smokin' Red Hot Bicuit

bright leaf red hot biscuit pimento cheese recipe nc


 Red Hot Bagel Sandwich

bright leaf red hot bagel sandwich recipe nc


Fried Red Hot Mac n Cheese Bites

bright leaf red hot mac n cheese bites recipe nc


Find stores that sell Bright Leaf near you

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Do you still have questions? Contact us!